The year 2013 was a year that changed us. Getting Rose. Her hospitalizations, heart surgery, difficult adoption. Nearly losing our sweet Peter. We knew that God was working on us by allowing us to experience the great sufferings and great joys in all of that. Not long after that intense year, our second child, our daughter Grace, revealed to us that she thought she had a vocation to the religious life. My mind went right to the day of Peter’s accident. I knew now why God allowed that to happen. For two years I have silently thanked God for that day thinking that what was to come would be made so much easier for it. What was to come was that our daughter would enter a cloistered Carmelite order in the middle of Nebraska when she was only eighteen years old.
When we made some immensely difficult decisions regarding Rose’s adoption, putting everything in the hands of judges, lawyers, social workers and ultimately God, we surrendered. When Peter was on the floor not breathing after having nearly drowned, we surrendered, understanding in a powerful way that God is in control and these lives are His. I think in His great goodness and mercy He knew that I would need the reminder of this surrender.
We thought we were prepared to surrender our daughter to the cloister, but we weren’t. It was more beautiful than we ever dreamed it would be and more heartache than we imagined possible.
While preserving the mystery that is the Carmel, I wish to share more about the path that lead to this day. Not her path. That is her story. But our path with the good, the bad, the ugly, the beautiful. Only God knows what He has planned for our Grace. She may stay, she may come home. But in spite of me, my daughter entered a cloistered Carmelite order.